Thunderstorm downs trees, limbs in Salem

Thunderstorm downstrees, limbs in Salem
SALEM -- A severe thunderstorm struck the city, downing limbs and trees that damaged homes and blocked a road.
The storm tore through the city between about 6:30 and 7:40 p.m. Thursday.
High winds toppled a tree onto South Lundy Avenue between Euclid Avenue and Deming Street, temporarily blocking Lundy, police said.
Winds also ripped off large limbs that fell onto houses along the 500 block of Jennings Avenue and the 1300 block of Jefferson Street.
No injuries or power outages were reported.
Boy, 6, found alone
FARRELL, Pa. -- A Farrell woman who police said left her 6-year-old son home alone has been charged with endangering the welfare of children.
Southwest Mercer County Regional Police said they arrested Tanescia M. O'Neal, 26, of Wallis Avenue around 1:30 a.m. Thursday after receiving a call.
They said the boy was taken in by a neighbor, and Mercer County Children and Youth Services was contacted.
Anti-landfill rally
PORTERSVILLE, Pa. -- A rally opposing a proposed landfill near McConnell's Mill State Park is planned for 2 p.m. Sunday at the Kildoo picnic area in the park. Petitions will be passed around and speakers will voice their concerns.
The rally is supported by Lawrence County Government Center interns, who are working with county officials to mount opposition to the landfill.
The industrial waste landfill would be located about 1,000 feet from the park and the Slippery Rock Creek, a water source for much of Lawrence County. Sechan Industries applied to the state for a landfill permit last month.
State park programs
PORTERSVILLE, Pa. -- Trees and snakes will be the featured topics of programs coming up at McConnell's Mill State Park.
"Trees are Terrific" begins at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Kildoo Trailhead near the covered bridge. A naturalist will talk about how to identify various trees in the area, as well as photosynthesis and its importance.
"Snakes Alive" is from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday in the Kildoo picnic area. A.G. Lucas will discuss snakes that are native to Pennsylvania, as well as those found around the world. Lucas will also point out differences between poisonous and nonpoisonous snakes. Weather permitting, a Life Flight helicopter will arrive at 2:30 p.m., and visitors can talk to the staff and walk through the helicopter. Participants are encouraged to bring a lawn chair.
Bridge to be repaired
NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Covert's Crossing Bridge in Union Township will be closed Monday for repairs. The one-lane, wooden plank bridge is slated to reopen Tuesday.
Gas station robbed
NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Two masked men escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash from the Marathon Gas Station on Highland Avenue.
Police said the clerk was in a back room at 10:50 p.m. Thursday when a man dressed in black wearing a ski mask approached her and said, "This is a robbery." Another man, also wearing a ski mask, emptied the cash register and the two men ran off, police said.
Police said the clerk did not see any weapons.
Teen pleads guilty
JAMESTOWN, Pa. -- A 17-year-old boy pleaded guilty to burning two wooden crosses in Jamestown about a month after his friend and co-defendant admitted the same crime.
The teen, whose identity was not released, pleaded guilty to ethnic intimidation, harassment, disorderly conduct and criminal mischief this week before Mercer County Common Pleas Judge Francis Fornelli.
State police say the boy and Jeffery Barnes, 19, lighted two kerosene-soaked wooden crosses June 4 in front of the home of a white woman whose boyfriend and two children are black. The woman and her mother were home at the time.
Barnes pleaded guilty to a charge of ethnic intimidation June 21 and was sentenced to one year of probation. Barnes said the two friends thought it would be funny and didn't realize the terror they caused.
College orientation
YOUNGSTOWN -- A college orientation program geared toward adults age 25 and older will be Saturday at Youngstown State University.
Between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m., Saturday College participants can learn how to enroll in or prepare for college. YSU professors also will teach math, writing, test-taking, library research and computer sessions.
For more information or to register, call Jim Olive, YSU Metro College program director, at (330) 965-3603.

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